10 things I have learned from being a mentor at StreetWise Partners

Streetwise partners is one of the mentorship programs I am involved with. We meet every Thursday at Morgan Stanley and practice public speaking in front of a cohort of mentors and mentees. 

StreetWise Partners’ goal is to leverage mentorship to increase employment opportunities for adults from overlooked and under-resourced communities within New York, Washington, D.C., and Detroit.

StreetWise Partners pairs volunteers with mentees who are unemployed or underemployed to provide them with the skills, resources, and access to networks they need to secure and maintain employment.

  1. Do not be afraid to practice putting yourself out there. Having the opportunity to speak in front of the room is such a valuable skill. 
  2. Collaboration and being open to different suggestions and ideas will help you gain new insights because everyone operates differently, so there is no right or wrong. 
  3. Giving back feels so good. There is no better way to learn than explaining in front of a large group of people. This practice helps me make much more concise explanations of what I know about career development, interviewing, and mentorship. 
  4. I am being open to saying Yes. I never thought I can juggle as many things as I can now and still have fun. I am continuously growing every day, and I appreciate that the more I say yes, the more I expand my comfort zone. 
  5. The consistency of having a mentee week after week helps me stay accountable and allows me to analyze my life and how I can be a good role model. It has helped me make smarter decisions. 
  6. Leadership through listening from a place of possibility and future based conversations is what causes people to grow. If people listen to someone only based on the past, that is not very exciting. The ability to hear what someone is committed to because of what their goals are will help inspire many more people. 
  7. Surrounding yourself totally different people. When else am I going to hang out with a bunch of finance folks and young professionals from so many different backgrounds and upbringings? I would not usually have the opportunity to hear so many different perspectives, if not for this program. It reinforces how much I enjoy working in the tech sector vs. financial services. 
  8. The power of having a mentor at a young age is so crucial. I would not be even half as close as where I am right now if it was not for people who had helped me from giving me feedback or even just by believing in me when I did not.
  9. How awesome it is that Linkedin promotes programs like these. I am so fortunate that regularly, Linkedin has companies similar to StreetWise Partners and IMentor, where we can give back in a readily available way. 
  10. Volunteering gives you so much in return in a way that money cannot. When you give back to society, your self worth goes up so much. I always feel great knowing that I am making good use of my time. 

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